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Three different women, one ancient curse…

To find the traitor that still threatens Dal Riata and Aedan, Domelch journeys
down a perilous path that leads her away from Aedan and back to Cailleach—into
certain danger. Brigit is drawn back to Gartnait, but her unrequited love for the
sullen king forces her to make a dangerous decision, a decision that could harm
them all. When Cailleach awakens in a different body in enemy lands, she finds
herself powerless and is captured by an enemy prince. In his arms, lost memories
return and the truth of her tragic past leads her down a path of rediscovery and
dangerous choices.

With war ravaging the land and the re-appearance of an ancient De’ Danaan foe,
Domelch is forced to ally herself with Brigit and then with Cailleach, a decision
that shatters her life with Aedan. To keep the land from turning into ice and snow,
all three women must make difficult choices and sacrifices to break an ancient
curse. Surrounded by a web of deceit, they are forced to trust one another and
discover they share a past fraught with lies and tragedy, threatening to destroy
all they care about. Can these three women break an ancient curse and put the
shattered pieces of their lives back together?

The thick scent of blood reached her and her pulse raced with eagerness.
Someone handed her a cup and gently prodded her toward the bull. Domelch
wanted to sink her teeth into the thick neck and lap up the blood as she had long
ago, but she restrained herself and filled her goblet as she watched others before
her do. She waited, her patience straining, to drink from the cup.

sacrifice. Lady Goddess, please accept this drink, the blood of a superior beast.”
He turned his cup over and spilled it on the ground. Runtir turned his eyes on
Domelch, motioning for her to come forward.

“We have here a new daughter of the Raven Goddess. Welcome her with open
arms.” He took her cup and gave her a different one, dipping his finger into the
goblet and anointing her on the forehead with blood. The warmth and stickiness
of the blood on her skin recalled many memories. “This is the drink for new
initiates.” He lifted his cup. “The power of the bull’s blood raises us up into Her
protective arms.”

Domelch hesitated, knowing there was more than blood in her goblet. To be
initiated she had to follow the rules. As a follower of Astarte, she knew all about
initiations. Closing her eyes, she tipped her cup, drinking deeply of the sweet-
tasting blood with a hint of the bittersweet flavor of nightshade.

The blood ignited her veins, roaring through her body in a fiery torrent.
Blood and
fire. Blood and fire. Is that chanting I hear or is it my veins singing with fulfillment?
The trees in the grove seemed to come alive, bending and twisting toward her,
the brooding stones pressing ever closer. Raven-masked figures danced around
a fire, embracing the night. The acrid scent of burning animal flesh filled the
grove. Her body tingled as if growing lighter and lifted on dark wings, floating on
the rising mist, the hunter’s moon beaming and pulsating against the black banner
of night. Domelch’s heart thundered in her ears and her blood thrummed with
intoxicating force at the thought of being part of something so special. The Raven
Goddess welcomed her with open, consoling arms.

The flutter of wings soared past her head, the dark shadow of a bird disappeared
into the night. A raven’s distinctive harsh cry echoed in the grove.

“Cardea, you cannot hide from me your true self.”
Copyright 2009 Kelley Heckart
No part of this web site is to be copied without the permission of the author.
5 stars! Heckart's writing gets better and
better with each book in this trilogy. Book 3
had me staying up at night to find out what
happens next. Even though I had
anticipated what happens to Domelch after
she awakens from the spell, I still found my
heart pounding hard as she finds out how
her world has changed in her absence. The
ending had me crying rivers, and it's still a
happy and satisfying ending to a
memorable historical/fantasy romance.

Reviewed by Jane Li, author of Barakel and Nissa:
A Reincarnation Love Story
Read complete review on